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Chris Bosh: Master of the mid-range

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For most of his career, Chris Bosh has been an above average mid-range shooter, and a really good one for a post player. In 2012-13, he started breaking box scores.


What you already know is that Chris Bosh is a pretty good shooter. A great one, for a big man.

You probably even noticed that he might be having a great year from an efficiency standpoint. Just in case you weren't sure to what extent the production is elite, let's go over this for a minute.

Bosh is finishing that the rim as well as ever, but he has elevated what makes the rest of his game possible: The mid-range jump shot. As of March 18, Bosh is leading the NBA in shooting from 16-to-23 feet at 54.3 percent, or what we consider long 2-point shots.

Consider the perspective around that type of mid-range efficiency.

The NBA average on shots with that distance is 38.4 this season. It's not a very good shot for most players.

Among centers who have played at least 40 games this season who play any significant minutes, Bosh is first in efficiency from the long mid-range by a wide margin. Chris Kaman (50), J.J Hickson (49) and Kevin Garnett (48) are the closest to Bosh's mark. Nobody at any other position gets any closer.

When you look even deeper, it exposes how particularly pinpoint the 10-year veteran's accuracy has been.

Since the 2000-2001 season, when the data began being collected, among players who have taken at least 200 of these mid-range shots in one season, only Luke Ridnour in 2009-10 (55.6) had a more efficient jumper.

Over the same period, among those that have taken at least 100 such shots, only five players in the league have shot better than what Bosh is doing this season.

Bosh is having a career season, not in terms of raw production, but in terms of points per attempt. His overall efficiency metrics are sparkling, mostly because he is burgeoning from the mid-range area.

How does this happen?

It's obvious that playing with two superstar wing players has created more space for Bosh to shoot, a reciprocal happening in which both parties benefit from an effective inside-out relationship. But Bosh's efficiency didn't really move much one way or another in his first two years with the Heat.

So besides the fact that he's getting the best perimeter looks that he has in his career, most of this has to be a credit to Bosh.

Bosh plays frequently in pick-and-pop situations with LeBron James and Dwyane Wade, and he also benefits from kick outs on dashing drives from those two and others, which constitutes a large portion of his looks. A far cry from his days in Toronto, Bosh is only used in isolation's on five percent of his possessions, according to Synergy Sports Data. He still posts up quite a bit, but the majority of Bosh's offense comes off of creation from the Heat's wings, and the All-Star rarely, if ever, has a play run for him. The Heat will often run early offense through Bosh, and give him the ball on the elbow before they figure out what's next, but it's never a designed play.

These days, Bosh moves completely in rhythmic unison with the Heat offense, flicking his wrist for feathery jumpers on unscripted brilliance from Wade and James, without hesitation. The result is the best mid-range shooter on earth right now spotting up on 32 percent of his possessions (Even taking a few 3-pointers, an experiment that is still in the works) and frustrating opposing big people to death.

Bosh is a fairly complete player who is good at most things across the board. But right now, he is great, elite, and supernatural at one thing, and luckily for Miami (second in the league in offensive rating) that one thing is critical to the team's offensive spacing and a relationship that allows his team to maximize it's offensive potential.